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Medical Billing and Coding



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Medical Billing & Coding

Fast Facts

Median salary:
Tuition and fees:
Program length:
36 weeks

Train for Your Career in Medical Billing and Coding

Career-focused medical billing and coding training in as little as 9 months..

Providing quality healthcare requires more than excellent patient care. Professionals in medical billing and coding do not treat patients, but they handle operations that are vital to the success of medical practices. If you are detail-oriented with a desire to learn, you can train for a career in medical billing and coding in as little as 9 months.

The Medical Billing and Coding Specialist diploma/certificate program at Virginia College is designed to prepare you for the field in a short amount of time. To enter this profession, you need the technical skills and know-how to accurately complete complex administrative duties. Our Medical Billing and Coding education includes hands-on training in classrooms that simulate real-world scenarios and actual work experience in an externship.

Wanda, Student

When I first started school, I got into the Medical Assistant program and finished it. I love helping people. Now I’m almost finished with my Medical Billing and Coding diploma, so I can work the front office and the clinical side. I love drawing blood and doing EKGs. My advice for new students is no matter how bad or how hard it seems, think of something positive you want to accomplish. Talk to the instructors and students. They’ll help you.

Wanda, Student

In the Medical Billing and Coding Specialist program, you will:

  • Get hands-on training from instructors with real-world experience
  • Alternate between attending classes on campus and online, adding flexibility to your schedule
  • Take one class at a time, allowing you to focus on one subject before moving on to the next
  • Know your entire schedule from the start so it’s easy to plan around school
  • Gain actual work experience through an externship

The Medical Billing and Coding program at Virginia College helped Marcia find a career with one of the largest clinic systems in Austin, TX. She feels proud knowing that she is using her skills to make a difference and doing something she enjoys.

Receive Practical Training for Billing and Coding Jobs

Virginia College’s Medical Billing and Coding program is designed to help you learn the skills that you will need on the job. Our program offers you an online digital classroom experience — videos, discussion forums and interactive activities — as well as laboratory and lecture classes on campus.

Our hands-on training and interactive lessons equip you in the fundamentals of medical office procedures. Real-world application is central to your training. You will work with the equipment and software programs typically found in healthcare facilities. Our goal is to prepare you for the field and give you a solid foundation for success, and our instructors support you throughout the learning experience

As a graduate of this program, you should be able to perform the following duties:

  • Utilize Current Procedural Terminology (CPT-4)
  • Work using the International Classification of Diseases (ICD-9 and ICD-10)
  • Code using the Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System (HCPCS)
  • Complete medical office insurance forms
  • Classify and file various billing and coding information
  • Understand how to protect the privacy of medical records
  • Demonstrate the ability to utilize codes
  • Show competency in medical reimbursement processes
Marcia, Graduate

My education really helped me in this position because it’s exactly what I learned how to do. I’ve moved up quite a bit and I’m in a really, really good position right now and I’m happy for it.

Marcia, Graduate

Gain Hands-on Medical Billing and Coding Experience in an Externship

Before you complete your diploma or certificate program, you will complete an 11-week externship in a physician’s office, clinic or related healthcare setting. An externship is a real job where you can develop your skills and learn from others who are working in the field.

During your externship, you will assign codes to patient medical files, fill out insurance claims and perform other billing and coding related documentation under the supervision of a health service professional. This gives you the opportunity to explore, learn and grow through actual work experience. We have a number of externship partners including Any Lab Test Now, Take Care Health, HealthSouth and others.

Earning a Medical Billing and Coding Certification

Once you earn your diploma or certificate, we encourage students who qualify to take one or more of the following billing and coding certifications:

  • Certified Coding Associate (CCA)
  • Certified Billing and Coding Specialist (CBCS)
  • Certified Professional Coder (CPS)

Earning a medical coding or billing certification could potentially set you apart from other job candidates. Our goal is to help you prepare for certification, but it is ultimately your responsibility to stay informed about which certifications you are eligible to take.

Billing and Coding Job Outcomes

Graduating with your Medical Billing and Coding certificate or diploma demonstrates that you have worked hard and are ready to pursue a new career. Our Career Development department offers career planning and placement assistance and can help you prepare for interviews, review your resume and begin your job search. Though we do not guarantee job placement, we will assist you with finding opportunities.

Victoria, Graduate

All my instructors were so personable. I enjoyed every single one of them. They were very encouraging. There were other schools I went to where you were just a number.

Victoria, Graduate

What is a medical biller?

Medical billers create claims from the information collected from patient visits. The information is categorized and coded and the data is entered into software to create the claim. To receive the maximum reimbursement for services provided, the medical biller must carefully verify the accuracy of the claim before sending it to the insurance company. The biller and insurance company may go back and forth until they agree on the claim.

Once the claim is approved, the insurance company compensates the healthcare provider and the patient is billed for his or her portion. To do well in this role, medical billers must be detail-oriented, resourceful, and skilled communicators.

General job duties for medical billers include:

  • Entering data with billing software
  • Submitting claims to insurance companies
  • Managing account payments and invoices
  • Investigating rejected or denied claims
  • Verifying the accuracy of medical codes
  • Working closely with insurance providers
  • Answering billing questions

What is a medical coder?

Medical coders take doctor’s orders, prescriptions and medical forms and translate them into universal medical codes that can be used across the healthcare system. There is a code that corresponds with each sickness, diagnosis and procedure, and it is the medical coder’s duty to assign the right codes to the services performed.

Medical coders work with thousands of codes day-in and day-out. These trained professionals are highly valued on the healthcare team.

General job duties for medical coders include:

  • Categorizing the services patients receive
  • Protecting the privacy of medical histories
  • Translating services into codes
  • Entering data into Electronic Health/Medical Record (EMR) software
  • Using classification software
  • Staying up-to-date on coding standards
  • Ensuring that coding accurately reflects medical care received
  • Passing codes onto medical biller to be converted into claims
  • Following coding guidelines and legal requirements

How Much Do Medical Billers and Coders Make?

According to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, individuals who work with medical records, such as medical billers and coders, make an average salary of $37,110 per year, or $17.84 per hour.* Job growth in this field is substantial and expected to grow faster than the average for all occupations.* Training for a career in billing and coding could be a personally and professionally fulfilling decision.

Begin your journey to a career in medical billing and coding. Fill out our information form or give us a call to learn more. A new career is yours to discover.

Available at the following locations:

* Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2016–2017 Edition, Medical Records and Health Information Technicians, (accessed August 2016). Expected national growth rate through the year 2024. National long-term projections and salary averages may not reflect local and/or short-term economic or job conditions and do not guarantee actual job growth or any particular salary.

The College makes no representation, promise or guarantee that completion of this program either assures passage of any certification examination or acceptance by any state board. Prospective and current students, as well as graduates, are responsible for researching and understanding all examination, registration or licensure requirements in any state in which they seek to become registered, licensed or employed. Virginia College does not guarantee employment or career advancement.

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